Your Baptism Continues to Strengthen You as You Run Your Race (HC LD 26, QA 69-71)

Back in 2003, I ran the Philadelphia Marathon. I was 24 years old. That was almost 20 years ago. Wow. I’m getting old. Anyway, I ran the marathon on a beautiful day in October in Pennsylvania. The morning was cool and it warmed up to the point I could run without a shirt. This allowed spectators and other runners to see what Kristina had written in Sharpie across my chest: “I’d rather be preaching.” As I ran the 26.2 miles in Philly, I availed myself of the drink stations to stay...

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God’s Big Gift that Is Often Left Unwrapped Under the Tree (HC LD 25, QA 65-68)

Oliver loved Christmas. It was Christmas Eve, and he couldn’t wait to wake up the next morning, run down the stairs, and open his presents. He knew he had to wait until after breakfast, but his visions of tearing open presents after his mother’s morning spread were quite vivid. He struggled to fall asleep, but in time he did, and on Christmas morning he jolted awake, ran down the stairs, and beheld quite a sight. Under the sparkling tree were presents galore. After breakfast, Oliver’s...

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Even Your Best Works Aren’t Part of Your Righteousness (HC LD 24, QA 62-64)

Would you consider two verses for a moment? The first is Deuteronomy 27:26, “‘Cursed be anyone who does not confirm the words of this law by doing them.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’” The second is Galatians 3:10 where Paul quotes Deuteronomy 27:26, “For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, ‘Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.’” Think about those verses. God has given...

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Do You Have to Perform for God to Accept You (HC LD 23, QA 59-61)?

It’s ingrained in us. We love performance. We celebrate it. We believe that hard work pays off. Tonight, the Golden State Warriors take on the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals. Both teams worked very hard and defeated very good basketball teams to rise from a record of 0-0 to the NBA Finals. Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Marcus Smart all worked incredibly hard to get to where they are. They performed, and that’s why they are where they...

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Will You Have a New Body the Moment You Die (HC LD 22, QA 57-58)?

I recently heard a Christian man remark about another believer who had died. With hope in the gospel, he said the woman who had died was now with Jesus dancing in her new body. The woman had suffered cancer, and his comments, no doubt, were intended to communicate the gospel hope that when believers die, they go to be with Jesus, and their suffering ends. However, as well-intentioned as he was, his comments were mistaken. See, human beings are body and soul, and when believers die, their souls...

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If You Are a Christian, You are Catholic (HC LD 21, QA 54-56)

One of the best things I learned in seminary was the short little phrase, “Words have meaning.” Now, you might say under your breath, “Thank you Captain Obvious for that great insight!” But in my experience, it seems some people forget this simple truth. People often misuse words or assume they understand a certain subject when in reality they misunderstand the subject because they don’t know the vocabulary. Matt Walsh, the conservative political commentator, is releasing a new...

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Many Professing Christians Apparently Don’t Know the Holy Spirit (HC LD 20, QA 53)

As Mark Twain used to say, “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” If you have a point to make, regardless of whether it is true or not, you can probably get some statistic to support it. You can probably get some “expert” to support it as well. I think we need to recognize the limitations of statistics and be careful and prudent with them, but they do have their place. According to The State of Theology survey conducted in 2020 by Ligonier Ministries...

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The Son Sits in the Supreme Seat (HC LD 19, QA 50-52)

Think for a moment about the most powerful people in the world. You probably think of political leaders, judges, business magnates, and religious figures. And all of them probably have important places where they sit. Pope Francis has his papal throne in Rome. Jeff Bezos probably has a certain seat at a huge conference room table. I saw a bizarre picture of Vladimir Putin meeting with financial advisors at the Kremlin. He was at the head of the table. At the other end of the table, about 20...

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How Is It Good for Us that Jesus Left Us (HC LD 18, QA 46-49)?

The ascension of Jesus is one Biblical truth I struggle to understand. How was it better that he leave us? Jesus said in John 16:7, “I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away.” How is that true? I want Jesus physically with me. I don’t say this in a flippant or irreverent way – I truly mean this – I would love to eat a delicious meal with Jesus and talk long into the evening, listening, questioning, and learning. I want to see his facial expressions and hear his...

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Gas Prices & the Riches of God’s Grace in the Resurrection (HC LD 17, QA 45)

Gas prices. It’s criminal to pay $437 per gallon. You’d come into a small fortune if you struck oil on your property. Imagine there is oil beneath the surface of your backyard, you just have to dig deep enough to get it, but you don’t know it’s there. One day, you think to yourself, “I don’t want to take out loans anymore to fill my car with gas. I’m going to do something about this craziness. I wonder if there is oil in my backyard.” So, you go out and start digging. You dig...

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